Bulgarian Pepper Casserole

Very good, but a bit of work.

1 1/2 c uncooked brown rice
2 3/4 c water
1 T lemon juice
3 T freshly minced dill or 3 t dried dill

2 T olive oil
1 large onion, minced
4 green bell peppers, chopped
1 t salt
fresh ground black pepper to taste
1/2 t oregano
2 t basil
8 cloves garlic, half minced and half sliced thinly (keep separated)
1 c feta cheese, crumbled

1 1/2 c cottage or ricotta cheese
2 fresh ripe tomatoes, sliced
1 c pitted Kalamata or Nicoise olives, whole or sliced

Put rice and water in a saucepan, bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer until the rice is tender (about 40 minutes). Remove from heat, and stir in lemon juice and dill. Set aside.

While the rice is cooking, heat the olive oil in a large skillet. Add onions and sauted until soft. Then add peppers, salt, pepper and herbs and cook until the peppers are tender. Stir in the minced garlic and cook for a couple minutes more. Remove from heat and stir in the feta.

Preheat oven to 375º and oil or butter a 9 ” x 13″ baking pan.

Combine the rice, peppers and cottage cheese or ricotta in a large bowl and mix well.  transfer to pan and spread evenly.  Top with tomato slices,  sliced garlic and olives.  Bake until bubbly, 35-40 minutes.

Adapted from Moosewood page 138

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